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Full text of "The Struggle For Peace"

96  ------------------------------------------------------------------___
the discussion, an argument certainly well calculated to arouse
strong feelings in this House and in the country. It is sug-
gested that to enter into conversations is a humiliation for us.
There has been talk about paying sacrifices to the dictators.
The right hon. Gentleman the Leader of the Opposition said
that I was going whining to Signor Mussolini. Gibes and
taunts of that kind leave me absolutely unmoved. They con-
vince me only of one thing, and that is that those who make
them do not realise the greatness of this country. It is a
great country, a strong country, a country that is the head and
centre of a great Empire. It is a country to which countless
millions of people look up for leadership, because they respect
her. It is for a great country to do what a small or a weak
country cannot always afford to do—to show magnanimity,
and whoever aspires to lead her must be ready to ignore abuse.
" Once upon a time there were Liberals who held fast to
that view. Once upon a time there were Liberals who after
the Boer War did not say that we must have performance
first; they took the view that faith and trust in honour and
good faith were sufficient to fix a standard to which men
would find it easier to conform. They knew that risks were
being taken in reliance upon, and their acceptance of, those
principles. That is the kind of Liberalism about which in my
youth I used to hear so much., and which in later times has
shown its belief in the same principles in its dealings a dozen
times with the Dominions, with Ireland and with India.
How shabbily does the attitude of the right hon. Member for
Caithness and Sutherland (Sir A. Sinclair) compare with that
of his great predecessors—John Morley, Campbell-Banner-
man, Asquith ! Do not let hon. Members trouble themselves
because others try to belittle their country by talking of
surrender and running away. Let us rather ask ourselves
whether what we are doing is right, and whether it will
contribute to the end we have in view.
" It is suggested that in what we have done we have had
to go behind the backs of our friends. [HON. MEMBERS :
* Hear, hear.'] Who speaks with knowledge of what we have
done and whether we have gone behind the backs of our
friends ? [HON. MEMBERS : * Eden/] My right hon* Friend
never said anything of the kind. On the 25th of last month